New Twitter Handle! @JabberAudio

We’ve been rocking the all-purpose @JabberNews on Twitter for a few years now, but it’s used for anything our mothership company, Team Jabberwocky, is up to. So just like we have a separate mailing list for Jabberwocky Audio fans, we decided this new year was a good time to have a specific Twitter handle as well.

Off to a new part of the Tulgey Wood!

If you followed us on Twitter @JabberNews, be sure to start following us on @JabberAudio!

Everything Brooks Tegler could Drum Up About Gene Krupa

Just like last week’s note about voice actor Kevin Murray in the news, we wanted to give you more news about what the extended company is up to while we’re working on pre-production for Quorum.

Now this may not be for everyone, but if you know someone who’s really into jazz, drums, and especially Gene Krupa, Brooks Tegler has the book for them: GK: The Tools that Built The Gene Krupa Legend.

Gene Krupa (via Hudson Music website)

In case you only know Brooks as the voice of Reg Macorum in Rogue Tyger or Chuck Codgers in Nostromo 2, he’s also an accomplished drummer and band leader who contributed music to Quorum. And when it comes to details about specific areas of history, say, a certain jazz drummer’s gear, he’s exacting. If you check out a preview of the book, you’ll likely know if this is up your jazz alley.

Profile on Kevin Murray

While we’re continuing pre-production of the second season of Quorum, along came across this item and wanted to amplify the signal: a piece on actor and educator Kevin Murray.

While Kevin Murray will be heard in the upcoming season of Quorum, he can also be heard in the previous season of Quorum, and most recently as King Grognio (among others) in our adaptation of “Prince Prigio.

We’re looking forward to seeing his work in The Good Lord Bird.

Casting for the New Season of Quorum Completed!

We’re happy to announce a key milestone in bringing the latest season of Quorum to you all: casting is done!

Cameron McNary returns as Jimmy Harmon, no longer an online poker player and no longer in Las Vegas. That change in locale means you won’t hear all the same characters you heard in “Outstanding Debts,” though a few familiar voices will pop up (we’re going to keep who a surprise). Rounding out the case are voices you may recognize from the rest of the extended Jabberwocky company as well as some new voices coming from the DC area’s deep bench of acting talent.

We’ll be sharing more in the coming months, with the completed episode airing next Fall.

Show Notes: Prince Prigio

Having recently completed our production of “Prince Prigio,” we wanted to thank our Patreon subscribers by providing some additional information about the production.

“Prince Prigio” eyed for Adaptation from the Start

Besides original series like Rogue Tyger and Quorum, we knew we’d want to adapt some classic adventures for Jabberwocky Audio Theater: adventures and cliffhangers and fantastical tales being one of the general touchpoints of our productions.

So even before the idea of Through the Looking Glass took form, Bjorn knew he wanted to adapt “Prince Prigio,” since it was one of his favorite fairy tales growing up — and quite modern for being over 100 years old.

One idea was to make a full-cast audio production like our main shows, but both because of the pandemic precautions and the speed at which we needed to record, having an adaptation that was an almost straight reading of the text felt the most expedient.

As it happens, this approach of ‘a main narrator with other voices piping in’ worked very well for “Prince Prigio” and may work for other productions — though we may find a bit more adaptation will be needed (more on that below).

Creating the Script: Chapters vs. Parts

One of the first hurdles was how to break up the story for broadcast. “Prince Prigio” is over 18,000 words and we weren’t going to cut it down to fit into a single half-hour episode… or even a two-parter.

Moreover, our “half hour episodes” actually need to come in no longer than 28 minutes for radio broadcast, and of those 28 minutes, two or three should be devoted to opening and ending credits. So basically, we’re looking at about 25 minutes per episode tops.

Now one thing we’ve learned from working on Through the Looking Glass is to estimate a narrator’s speaking time. So far, it runs from about 130 words a minute to 150 words per minute, depending on factors such as the narrator’s default pace for the story, how many characters they voice, and the story action. For example, a chase scene will have a naturally more frantic pace then describing a feast.

We’ve learned to be cautious in our estimates and try for 130 words per minute. That means that “Prince Prigio” would be at least 5 parts. And to give us even more wiggle room –there might be musical transitions or sound effects to sell a scene– we were looking at a six-part series.

Meanwhile, “Prince Prigio” had 18 chapters, and a quick look at the chapters found that, like just about any chapters of a book, they’re uneven. At the 25-minute mark, we couldn’t easily end at the end of the chapter. Not only that, we couldn’t end at a chapter neatly and consistently at the 22-minute mark, the 23-minute mark, or the 24-minute mark.

So we had to make a choice of whether to follow the chapters and have episodes of wildly different lengths… or to follow our broadcast format and find a way to make the adaptation work.

Since we’re an audio production that’s broadcast on the radio in a very specific format, we decided to figure out a way to make the episodes work ending mid-chapter. Luckily, the source material provided a clue for how this could happen. The narrator, one can assume a somewhat silly avatar of author Andrew Lang himself, occasionally comments on the action of the story and his telling of it, not unlike how William Goldman talks about having to adapt the ficticious Simon “S.” Morgenstern’s Princess Bride: it’s all another droll layer to the meta fairy tale.

The trick then became to “hang a lantern” on the fact that the episodes were not ending neatly at the end of chapters in most cases, and have our fictitious narrator get rather fussy about it. We’re biased, but we think this adds a fun dimension to the production.

The rest of the show notes are available to our Patreon Subscribers.

Casting the Parts

Getting the Recordings and Editing

Generating Production Estimates for the Future

We’re so thankful for our Patreon supporters that help us keep bringing new stories to air!